Making garam masala, a spice mix common in Indian cooking, is easy. Sourcing the ingredients, in particular the black cardamom, can be difficult. Check the ethnic section of your local grocery store and bulk store. If you happen to have one close, an Indian grocer is your best bet.
This recipe comes from ecurry. I recommend it. Use it in traditional Indian recipes or make up your own, as I did last week, adding it, along with some tumeric, grated ginger, garlic and yogurt to a quick saute of chicken, cauliflower, onion, carrot and red pepper.
125 mL (1/2 cup) whole coriander seeds
60 mL (1/4 cup) cumin seeds
30 mL (2 tbsp) small green cardamoms
6 to 8 black cardamoms
30 mL (2 tbsp) cloves
15 mL (1 tbsp) black peppercorns
cinnamon sticks measuring 20 cm (8 inches) total
3 bay leaves
3 dried red chiles
2 mL (1/2 tsp) ground nutmeg
Toast each spice separately in a dry pan, until just fragrant. They will burn easily. Allow to cool.
Grind spices in a spice grinder (I have a coffee grinder I use just for spices.)
Store in a tightly sealed container.